European Network News

International e-conference, 21 of April 2021

International e-conference, 21 of April 2021: Promoting Sustainable and Social Travel in Europe

After publishing and presenting our six proposals for a social and sustainable tourism in Europe to the European Parliament in November 2020 (list of participants), we plan to go even further in 2021 and contribute actively to a collective effort to support a more resilient, responsible, harmonious and social tourism after covid19, adapted to the new reality provoked by this pandemic crises. A new travel sector more committed to a stronger territory cohesion, cultural and natural engagement and supporter of a local based economy.

In 2020, to face the actual crisis, Portugal launched a comprehensive action plan for the development of sustainable tourism in 2021. This seems to be a step in the right direction since this action plan foresees the involvement of hotel accommodations in reducing energy consumption, a training policy for sustainable tourism actors and the creation of a network of stakeholders contributing to a greener tourism in the next years.

This is the most important sustainable tourism initiative in the Mediterranean area and we are grateful about it. We wish to take advantage of the Portuguese Presidency in Europe from the 1st of January 2021, to promote sustainable tourism and a relaunch based on the European ecological pact through:

1/ Implementing a operational network of sustainable tourism actors in Europe to build capacities and strengthen the cooperation, to give visibility to our actions and offers, coproduce offers notably through the promotion of rail transport on the occasion of the European Year of Rail,  

2/ Enhancing the local impact of sustainable tourism by amplifying the logic of territorial contribution, of circular economy and using a «travel label» based on the ecological, cultural and social impact of a stay to inform travellers.

PROGRAM (Lisbon time)

9.00. Lisbon Time (10.00 Paris Time) Welcome session. General presentation and introduction (European Network of Sustainable Travel)

9.30 Lisbon Time (10.30 Paris Time) Sustainable Tourism Strategies

Coordination : Prosper Wanner


  • Teresa Ferreira, Diretor, Turismo de Portugal (National Authority for Tourism)
  • Cláudia Monteiro de Aguiar, European Deputy in charge of the report establishing an EU strategy for sustainable tourism (Link to the report)

Debate Moment. Free interventions

  • Blanca Miedes University of Huelva, Spain
  • Marta Cabral, Director of Rota Vicentina Association, Portugal

10.30. Lisbon Time (11.30 Paris Time) The European Year of Rail (link to the event)

Coordination : Julia Balatka


  • Anna Deparnay-Grunenberg, European Deputy and Rapporteur of the European Year of Rail
  • Ramune Genzbigelyte-Venturi, European Commission, Unit GROW F4 – Tourism, Textiles and Creative Industries
  • Ana Feu Basilio, European Commission, Unit MOVE C4 – Rail interoperability and safety

Debate Moment. Free interventions

  • Julie Gobert, university of Paris, France
  • Kerstin Dohnal, travel agencies Conscious Tourism Group, Austria
  • Nadège Ailhaud, travel agency Ekitour, France

11.20 break

11.30. Lisbon Time (12.30 Paris Time) The Value of Culture for Sustainable Tourism.

Coordination : Joao Ministro


Debate Moment. Free interventions

12.30 Lisbon Time (13.30 Paris Time) Conclusions and Ending

Interventions: Julia Balatka for the European Network for Sustainable Travel and Annalisa Spalazzi for the IT.A.CA Festival.


  • Organization: European Network for Sustainable Travel
  • Email organization: europeannetworkst(at)
  • Institutional Partner: Turismo de Portugal
  • Other participants: Ministry of culture of Portugal, EU Commission, Council of Europe, European Parliament (Tran commission), Universities, Faro Convention Network
  • Date of the event: 21 of April 
  • Duration: 4 hours 9h-13h (Lisbon time)
  • Conference platform: Zoom (live transmission to facebook and Youtube)
  • Presentations: possibility to use à Power Point (max 5 slides)
  • Language: english (free translation if needed)

Group of coordination:

  • Joao Ministro for Portugal – joao.ministro(at)
  • Jean-Luc Madinier for Italy – sardaignenliberte(at)
  • Petra Thomas for Germany petra.thomas(at)
  • Julia Balatka for Austria julia(at)
  • Jesús Martin for Spain – jesus(at)
  • Prosper Wanner for France – pwanner(at)

Link to the Facebook group